Recipe: open crab lasagne with white wine and tomatoes

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Sometimes recipes, or recipe ideas – to be more exact, pop into my head without any context (or warning) at all. But then I do think about food an awful lot… This open crab lasagne happened just like that. I was thinking of what I could cook for the weekend and suddenly this idea formed of an open crab lasagne.

And it turned out really well! The white wine, cream and tomatoes compliment the crab beautifully without overpowering the seafood. I really wanted this dish to taste of fresh crab, although in a ‘pasta with a creamy sauce’ kind of setting. And I find it genius using lasagne sheets like this (obviously not my idea in the first place), as it puts the focus on the crab and not the pasta. I hope you enjoy this little dish of mine as much as I did!

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Open crab lasagne with white wine and tomatoes, serves 2

4 lasagne sheets 

1 tbsp butter + 1 tbsp neutral oil 

approx 120 g cherry tomatoes, cut in half 

50 ml white wine

150 ml double cream

1/4 vegetable stock cube

100 g fresh crab meat (white and brown)

1/2 lime, zest only

dill, finely chopped + extra for serving 

parsley, finely chopped

salt & pepper

dried edible flowers for serving (optional)

Boil the lasagne sheets until soft in salted water. Heat up a non-stick frying pan, add butter and oil and when melted the tomatoes. Let them caramelise and soften for approx 5 minutes. Pour in the wine and let it boil for a minute or two. Add the cream and the stock cube and stir. Let it thicken for a few minutes. Add lime zest and season to taste. Add half the crab meat and all the herbs (apart from the garnish).

Place two low bowls or plates near the stove. Take one lasagne sheet at the time and place it in the frying pan to coat it with sauce. Move it to the bowls/plates and place one, a bit folded over, on each plate. Add a spoonful more of sauce on each plate. Place the second sauce-covered lasagne sheet in the bowls slightly overlapping the first one. Add more sauce and divide the crab meat. Decorate with dill and dried flowers. 

 

London: Loved every bite at Kricket Soho

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It feels like almost every day a new fun restaurant opens its doors in Soho. Maybe not quite, but I love how this part of London evolves quicker than the rest.

One of the latest additions to Soho’s Denman Street is the opening of Kricket Soho. Kricket started out in a shipping container in Brixton and created such a following with their trendy Indian dishes that they opened a proper restaurant in Soho.  My friend Felicity, and also my dinner companion this evening, has frequently visited the Brixton restaurant and so was my menu guide here.

Some dishes were completely new additions to the menu, which our waiter kindly highlighted for us. And when I queried if the Grüner Veltliner would work well with the food he poured us a taster so we could decide. And yes, the slightly fruity (but not sweet) Grüner Veltliner complimented the array of dishes perfectly.

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Our first dish of the evening, and a must for Felicity, was the bhel puri – one of their classics consisting of puffed rice, raw mango, tamarind, sev and yoghurt. Sublime!

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The Hyderabad baby aubergines with coconut and curry leaves we had next were nice, but lacked a little oomph compared to the other dishes, we thought.

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The Lasooni scallop with goan sausage, poha and seaweed (we had one each) were really nice! Perfectly cooked, the roe still attached and full of flavour.

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Next we had another seafood dish; butter garlic crab with seaweed papad (papadums) which was also delicious. It was served warm but we still had some left towards the end of the meal and it was just as nice cold.

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The kathi roll with duck leg was utterly moreish and perfectly paired with the peanut chutney and pickled cucumber.

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Although it may not look that special, this kulcha bread with bone marrow and cep was amazing!

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The last dish we had were these grilled lamb chops that we could see on the pass when we arrived and I knew straight away from the smell that they would be delicious. They certainly were and the two sauces; yoghurt with black stone flower and wild garlic chutney were lovely too!

Although using lots of Indian flavours and ingredients there is definitely an element of cross-over here, by using wild garlic and creating dishes full of flavour but not too spicy. I’m sold! And will be back shortly. Probably with Felicity as we both loved it!

Kricket, 12 Denman Street, London W1D 7HH

Classic food at The Gilbert Scott, St Pancras

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When I meet up with my friend Helen there is always nice food involved, but as we usually meet on Sunday evenings (due to very different work schedules) there are a limited number of restaurants to choose from (most are open for Sunday lunch but not dinner).

Last time we met up in London we decided to have dinner at Marcus Wareing’s The Gilbert Scott in St Pancras Station. It’s a nice grande restaurant with a classic British and European menu.

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We started with rosé champagne in the bar; we see each other so seldom every time is worth celebrating!

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The bar is nice and cosy but the restaurant is a large room with plenty of ceiling height and a bar in the middle of the room. It was surprisingly busy this Sunday evening which contributed to the nice atmosphere.

We began our meal with a starter each. I had the Dorset crab with carrots, kohlrabi and cashews. A really fresh dish and very pretty on the plate.

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Helen had the foie gras with figs, smoked almonds and crisp bread. Also very nice and pretty as a picture.

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For the main course neither of us could resist the fillet of beef with truffle sauce (yum!) and chips. Absolutely delicious!

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I have no idea how we had room for pudding, but we just couldn’t resist the chocolate praline tarte with vanilla ice cream. Yes, it was amazing!

We had a wonderful evening and the food was both elegant and perfectly cooked. Just what you expect from both Marcus Wareing and the beautiful St Pancras station. The service could have been a bit sharper, but all in all it was a great dinner.

The Gilbert Scott, St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, Euston Road, London NW1 2AR

 

 

 

 

Tom’s Kitchen, Chelsea – revisited

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Tom’s Kitchen is one of those homely restaurants, almost with a pub feel, serving nice food you can count on. It’s basically where I want to go when I don’t want to go to a fancy restaurant. And it was exactly where my parents and I wanted to go on their last evening in town in September, when we after a long day of exploring London just wanted to sit down to a really nice meal but without the fuss.

It was fairly quiet at the restaurant that Sunday evening, but the staff was getting ready to pack the restaurant in boxes for refurbishment.

We started with a lovely dressed crab and toasted bread to start. We all love seafood and one each. Such a treat!

Mum and I continued the seafood theme and had fried lemon sole with seaweed butter, with potato mash and spinach on the side. I forgot to take a picture, but the fish was truly lovely. I was just a bit annoyed as we had to wait about 10 minutes for the sides, and had to remind the staff. But once it had all arrived on the table we had a lovely meal.

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Dad had the burger, which is really really nice, and enjoyed it immensely! The service could have been a bit more focused this evening, but the food was great!

Tom’s Kitchen, 27 Cale St, London SW3 3QP

Seafood feast!

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No, this is not what we eat every day in Sweden but I so wish it was! My first evening at the summer house (a Saturday) my parents and I had a proper seafood feast to celebrate being together again and my birthday the week before.

We love girolles almost as much as we love seafood and as they’re in season we started off with a proper girolle toast (fry the bread in butter, fry the girolles in more butter with garlic, add parsley) and bubbly and then got serious about the seafood. We had langoustines with garlic butter, fresh Swedish crayfish (such a treat!), crab claws and smoked prawns. Smoked prawns may sound weird but they are oh so delicious!

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It was such a wonderful meal with amazing seafood, great company and the accompaniment of bread, cheese and home made mayonnaise.

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Mayonnaise

1 egg yolk, at room temperature

1/2 – 1 tsp dijon mustard

1/2 tsp white wine vinegar

ca 200 ml neutral oil (I used rapeseed oil) 

1 lemon, juice only

salt, white pepper

Mix the egg yolk with mustard and vinegar. Beat the egg mixture while adding the oil drop by drop. When the mixture has thickened you can add the oil in a thin spurt. Season to taste with lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Dinner at Eelbrook, Fulham

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Even though I don’t live in central London I am more than pleased with the restaurants near where I live. Boma have nice burgers, just like Joe’s Brasserie and the best pub ever is just around the corner (all three places are actually within a 4 minute radius!).

There’s also a lovely one starred pub with amazing food a 10 minute walk north, and if you walk the same distance in another direction you have lovely Claude’s. And now there’s another addition; Eelbrook.

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Caroline and I had dinner here on a Saturday night at in January and had a lovely meal! We started with pig’s head croquetas that were utterly delicious! As was the little crab tartlettes with beurre blanc and chives which I loved.

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We also shared a portion of smoked eel, with beetroot, apple, mustard and horseradish.

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Then it was time for our mains. I had bavette with broccoli rabe, trompettes and wild garlic butter. Very simple but absolutely perfect.

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Caroline’s pork chop with lentils, leek and romesco sauce was equally amazing!

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What a great addition to the already mentioned restaurants! This is definitely a little more up-scale than some of the others but the cooking is consistently very good and quite homely so it really works for a neighbourhood restaurant.

Eelbrook, Eel Brook Common, New King’s Road, Fulham, London SW6 4SE

Rice noodles with crab, lime and coriander

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Sometimes I can really crave crab and when I do I find the packets of fresh crab meat in the super market especially handy. Of course a freshly cooked whole crab is nicer but it takes quite a lot of time to pick out the meat, so for a weekday I really like the packets.

This dish with vermicelli rice noodles, crab and butter to carry the flavours of chilli, lime and coriander turned out really well and feels light and fresh. Perfect summer grub if you ask me!

Rice noodles with crab, lime and coriander, serves 1-2

2 nests of vermicelli rice noodles

50 g salted butter

5 cm leek, the white part

1/2 red chilli

1 lime, zest and juice

1 handfull coriander, chopped

100 g white and brown crab meat

Place the noodles in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Slice the leek and finely chop the chilli. Melt the butter in a frying pan and add leek, chilli and lime zest and fry for a few minutes without browning. Add the coriander and crab meat and stir. Season. Drain the noodles and add to the pan. Turn off the heat, stir and add the lime juice.